The Patriots had a pair of joint practices with the Raiders on Tuesday and Wednesday. On Friday, the Patriots played the Raiders in the preseason finale for both teams.
For New England, the game didn’t go well. Afterward, coach Bill Belichick tried to be pragmatic.
“All right, well we didn’t have a really good night tonight in any phase of the game,” Belichick told reporters. “That’s obvious. Might have left it on the practice field on Tuesday and Wednesday. Certainly practiced a lot better than we played out there tonight.
“Obviously, I need to clean up a lot of things here. We just didn’t play well in any phase of the game. We didn’t play with any kind of consistency. A couple of touchdowns called back, turned the ball over, didn’t play good defense, didn’t play well in the kicking game. I’ve obviously got to do a better job and so, it starts with me. We’ll get back to work this week and work on what kind of things we need to work on. Like I said, it’s disappointing because we did things a lot better in practice against the Raiders than we did tonight. Hopefully, we can regain that level of execution and performance.”
Even if they do, will it be good enough? Belichick has a knack for getting the most out of what he has. What if he just doesn’t have enough this year?
It’s one of the major questions hovering over a franchise that has gone three full seasons with a postseason victory. Looking around the rest of the AFC, it’s hard not to think the streak will run to four.